There is an issue for which we don’t give much thought to and we just carry on with our lives. That issue is gender. Just look around you. Everything is gendered. Starting from names, toilets, clothes, accessories, to behaviours, practices, and code of conduct. Movies exhibit these gender differences very well, and the media has been a major contributing factor for instilling notions of maleness or femaleness in our minds.
Take an example of going out on a date with a guy/girl. Girls usually dress up for the guys. Guys open doors for the girls and pull out the chairs for them to sit. Guys pay for the dinner. A very typical gendered notion comes into our minds when we think of a setting in a date. This is just an example. Infact, everything in our lives is gendered in one way or another. Even the way we dress.
But come to think of it, why do these differences in roles, behaviours and practices exist in the first place? The main reason is that it has been a social construct. All these behaviours and so-called rules on how a man and a woman are supposed to behave have been construed by the society. Things like a man should not cry or display emotions, a woman should be submissive and sensitive, etc.
Let’s look at this objectively. The only thing that is different between a man and a woman is the biological role. Man can provide one part of the haploid cell that can fuse with the other part of the haploid cell in the woman and the woman can give birth to a child. That is all the difference. The difference stops there. Consider the rest, with regards to rights, education, freedom of speech, freedom of thought, etc. They are all the same for both men and women. No one has a particular superiority or inferiority title attached to them. Because after the child, it becomes the responsibility of BOTH the men and the women to take care of the child, not just the women.
So my fellow humans, let’s break down this polarity. Let’s break down these differences. Men and women are both humans, that’s all. There are no differences between them. The roles might be different biologically, but that doesn’t confer a difference in cognition and expression of emotions. Because there are women out their who are emotionally strong and there are men out there who are emotionally weak. So we cannot generalise and demarcate the differences.
It is ok for guys to cry too. It is alright for women to speak out loud. It is alright for guys to put on make-up to present themselves better. It is alright if girls don’t put make-up on or dress nicely in uncomfortable clothes. Let’s just deconstruct all these differences and the next time you do anything, think if your behaviour is in any way gendered. If it is, then understand that you needn’t necessarily label it as such.